In the airport, on my way home to NZ... I'm going to be here a while (read: FOREVER) so might as well write a race report, race pics to come in a later post.
I had some great training coming into the race. 'Nuf said. I felt ready to lower my half-ironman PR (5:23:47, Boulder 70.3 2011) by quite a bit, and I desperately wanted to break my 4th AG curse -- I was 4th AG in every half-ironman and ironman last season... and I don't mean break it in the 6th AG Ironman 70.3 Hawaii kind of way, where I was blown across the road multiple times, clinging to my bike in the Hawaiian cross-winds. Nope, I wanted to break the 4th AG curse by hitting the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd notes.
Pre-race: I had made a friend at the Gordonvale 5k the previous week (2nd place male), we exchanged details, and instead of flying down, paying for bike fees, and couch surfing with a stranger, I opted to drive down from Cairns to Yeppon with him and his wife, stay with them, and do the race. He, too, was racing, his wife was a very pregnant (8th month) spectator. Both were amazing, I cannot thank them enough for their generosity.
Race day: Cool, "winter" day. Sort of like a cold Canadian summer day. That is, weather topped at 21C, sometimes sunny, sometimes cloudy.
I had my race plan, time to execute. I was looking forward to the swim, and to the run. I was dreading the bike, which was a very painful 5x out-and-back course on the roughest roads known to man. All power output felt like it was lost to the road (and I have none to spare, I weigh like -5 lbs!)...
I finally got that sub-30 swim out... but I then had to run up the beach, up the hill, through the resort grounds to cross the line into transition... so, until next time, the "official" sub-30 has eluded me. Choppy conditions, but the minimal current was with us/sideways against us in the ocean.
TP swim file: here
Nothing to complain about. All I've practiced is taking shoes off while riding. I still don't know how to slip into already clipped in shoes. That's what I am practicing for next time!
Haha, embarassing. Let me say this course sucks. It is 5x an out-and-back ride. 9ks out, 9ks back. Nothing to look at, nothing to see, on the roughest road imaginable. AND I RIDE ON NEW ZEALAND CHIP SEAL. It was flat, it was dull, and I was uninspired. Given so many people on such a small course, I spent most of my ride avoiding the drafting call, and "pretending to race". At least nutrition was spot on. I want tough courses, I want beautiful courses. What really gets to me... this is the 13th year of the Yeppoon 70.3, surely they'd have become established enough to get permits to use the roads into the national park right nearby? It's embarrassing. I didn't really try hard, I was mainly bored. And then that night I found out my rear brake pad was stuck to the carbon rim of my wheel... so that probably didn't help things either. Ah well...
nutrition: 1 gel every 30' for 6 total. 600cals.
hydration: 3 bottles nuun
TP bike file: here
You know the drill...
I haven't run a stand-alone half-marathon since 2010, but this turned out to be a PB half-marathon time by 2:17. Yay! It wasn't necessarily a fast course, but it was fun. It was 3 loops of: 1/3 through twisting and turning resort grounds, 1/3 of straight flat road, 1/3 of trail running, not hilly just a few bumps here and there. It was AWESOME, it kept me on my toes, and challenged me. I picked up speed on the flats, worked hard on the trails, and ran my tangents everywhere. I was motivated and picking people off one-by-one.
nutrition: 9 clif bloks in the first 2 1/3 laps of the course, and coke on the last 2/3 of the last lap. 300cals + coke
hydration: a couple cupfuls of water, only drank to thirst, did NOT overdrink this time, yay! the coke as well
TP run file: here
So, yes, a new PB of 5:18:41, sadly 4th place AG yet again, no Vegas slot (it went to 3rd)... There are good and bad things to take from this race, and I'm extremely motivated to work on them all. Until the next time...